Aaron Sansoni Training

Video and Event Training for Business Growth by Aaron Sansoni
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Why You Shouldn’t Aim For Happy Clients

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Some time ago, I was a keynote speaker at a conference that focused on creating happy clients. Obviously, given what I do and how I do it, many people believe that I have a lot to say about that particular topic and the reality is that yes, I do. It may not, however, be what most people want to hear.

I firmly believe that you shouldn’t aim to create happy clients when running your business. Imagine the surprise on the conference attendees face when I said that! It’s certainly not a popular opinion, but I strongly believe it’s an accurate one. You shouldn’t aim for happy clients. You should aim higher. You should aim for tribe members.

What are Tribe Members

Tribe members are individuals that have worked with you and are fully committed to what you do and the way that you get it done. They will do anything for you and they aren’t afraid to tell others about how much they love you and your company. In fact, “not afraid” is perhaps too weak of an impression. They love telling other people about your company and look for opportunities to do so!  

These are the kind of customers you want to create. These are the ones that will provide the most value over time.

Where to Find Tribe Members

Tribe members are created based on great relationships. You build tribe members. You don’t find or create them. It’s a long process, but I promise it is totally worth it to have a group of individuals that you love and that love you when it comes to your business.

The reality of running a business means that tribe members are much more difficult to nurture than happy clients — a fact that is compounded when you take your business to scale. Odds are that, when operating on a large scale, you won’t just have happy clients…you’ll have unhappy clients as well. It’s inevitable. ‘

The key is identifying which of your current clients have tribe potential. Do you have clients that seem ecstatic about an interaction? Beyond happy? Over the moon, perhaps? These are great indicators that you’ve identified a tribe member early on. Nurture these people by going above and beyond for them in return.

In fact, there are four (4) things you can do every single day that will help you create the perfect environment to nurture tribe members. I cover these steps and so much more in my Empire Mastery Course. Visit AaronSansoni.com for more information!

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Recruiting is a Sales Process

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Recruitment is a sales process. Whether you are the person hiring or the person applying for a particular role, you can be 100% sure that selling should be a part of your preparation and delivery.

The Applicants

Comparing the job application process to sales is not a huge leap. Most candidates are automatically aware that they are selling more than just a product. They are selling themselves.

Applicants create professional looking resumes highlighting their greatest achievements. They submit carefully crafted cover letters outlining some of their most redeeming qualities and put together the perfect interview outfit.

Do people that are merely presenting themselves for consideration go through all of this trouble? Unfortunately, the answer to that question is yes. Societal standards say that’s what they should do, so most of them do it. The truly great candidates, however, will go above and beyond to sell themselves.

Consider trying the following experiment. Pull 10 promising candidates from your applicant list. Call them and tell them you appreciate their application, but feel that they are not a good fit for the company at this time. The person on the other end of the line will likely react in one of the following ways:

  1. They will say thank you for your consideration and hang up.
  2. They will say thank you for the outreach and ask why they weren’t a good fit or what they could do to improve their chances next time.

What’s the difference? Applicants that respond in the first manner may be great candidates…but they don’t care. They don’t care enough to sell themselves if they’ve accepted the first no they’ve encountered from you.

Applicants that respond in the second manner, however, have taken the initiative to identify what it is about their personal sales pitch that isn’t working so they can correct it. This tiny question is enough to show that they understand the sales game they are playing, and truly do care about its outcome.

The Recruiter

Although it may not seem as obvious as an applicant selling themselves for a particular role, recruiters should be selling just as much. Rather than selling their personal accomplishments and skills though, they are selling the company.

A recruiters sales process begins the second they create a job advertisement. If well crafted, it should contain enough information to intrigue the right kind of candidates. That means it should be transparent, and it should differentiate your company from others looking for similar candidates.

Transparency is important in a sales process. You want to make sure that you are only offering what you intend to deliver or you’ll wind up with a less than happy receiving party. The same is true for hiring companies. Do not sell your company by advertising a possible pay rate or benefit or schedule that you don’t intend to deliver to any candidate that walks through the door.

Equally as important in a sales process is differentiation. You need to convince potential applicants that your company stands out on the list of businesses that do what you do. It is your job as a successful recruiter to explain why an applicant should want to work for your company and why your mission and vision matter.

Thinking of recruitment the same way you would think about selling a product or service is both smart and valuable. It helps recruiters determine which candidates are serious about wanting to work for their company, and it helps candidates realize which companies they want to work for.

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3 Things I Learned On My Sales Journey

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One of my favorite things that I get to do is teach people. I am obsessed with education for myself and I truly love being able to educate others in a way that is going to help them succeed. What’s interesting, however, is that I didn’t always know that helping others and teaching people was a passion of mine. It was something that I learned when I first started out on my own sales journey.

In fact, I learned a lot of things when I first got into sales. Some were personal lessons but others were shareable. They were things I could teach. Here are the 5 things I learned on my own sales journey.

If you have a product or service, you have an obligation to learn how to sell that product or service.

When you’re relying on a particular product or service as the livelihood of your business and source of income, you are absolutely required to learn how to sell that product or service. If you don’t know how to sell it you will never be successful. Why? If you don’t know how to sell it then you don’t see the value in it. And if you don’t see the value in it, why should others?

If you can’t sell, you’re not in business.

You can be good at your craft…excellent at your craft even, but it will do you no good unless you know how to articulate the value you can provide to other people. You may understand that your product or service has the potential to save lives or save money or make life easier, but your customers can’t know that unless you tell them. What’s more? You need to be able to tell them in such a way that you solve their problems. If you can’t do that, then they don’t buy. If they don’ buy, then you’re not in business.

Sales can be taught.

Believe it or not, you don’t have to be born to sell. You can learn sales. As long as you understand what it is that you’re in business to do, and you have a strong desire to succeed, then you can learn how to be good at sales. It’s not a weird, mysterious process that takes place in the shadows or behind closed doors. It’s a concept you can learn with a little time and a lot of effort.

There are undoubtedly so many other things I learned on my sales journey and I doubt that I can communicate all of them in the form of a digestible blog post. These are merely three lessons that stood out from the early stages of my career. You can find out more about my journey (and how to start your own sales journey) by picking up my book, attending one of my mastery classes, or following me on social media!

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7 Qualities of a Great Direct Influence

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If you’ve started taking control of your own life, odds are that you’ve thought about how that may affect the individuals closest to you. Your inner circle, so to speak. More than likely some of the people that you currently spend time with on a daily basis aren’t on your level quite yet.  They say that you become the sum of the five people closest to you. So, it makes sense that we should try to evaluate each of these people for qualities conducive to success. Think about the following seven character traits when deciding who makes it into your inner circle.

Positivity

You want the people that are around you to be primarily positive people. Why? To help you be a positive person. When you spend a lot of time with someone you tend to take on some of their attitude as your own, so why not surround yourself with individuals that promote positivity. You want them to lift you up rather than bring you down.

Dedication

Dedicated people are motivating in their own right. You know they are committed to getting a job done regardless of what the job may be. They are less likely to desert you when things get tough, and more likely to support you in achieving your goals.

Confidence

Confidence is contagious and that’s enough of a reason to fill your inner circle with people that possess this particular quality. The trait goes hand in hand with positivity and is excellent for keeping spirits high. Make sure, however, to distinguish confidence from arrogance when evaluating someone’s character.

Activation

Some people tend to confuse activation with motivation.  You use motivation to psych yourself up on a daily basis, but it’s temporary. You have to keep coming back for more and the effects are relatively temporary. Activation, by contrast, is something you can use again and again. Think of it as a tool. You want the people around you to activate you. They should give you something that you can actually use for more than a single moment in time.

Inspiration

Choose to surround yourself with people that inspire you to do better, dream bigger, or work harder. Find people that make you want to keep going, even when you’re feeling like there’s no point. Those that think differently or creatively are also great inspirers.

Encouragement

This particular quality can be one of the most difficult to get right. You want the people around you to encourage you, but you also need to remember that they are not the reason that your goals have meaning. You can find significance in yourself. These people should support your goals, not define them.

Valuable

When I say that I want you to be around valuable people I’m not talking about individuals with a high net worth. I’m talking about people that add value to your life. These are the people that make you walk away from most conversations saying, “I can use that information.” They don’t have to offer you life-changing realizations, but they should provide you with a usable takeaway on a regular basis no matter how small.

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When To Fire Underperformers

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If you’ve ever managed any type of metric-driven team, then you are aware that there will be performance rockstars and there will be performance duds. The rockstars are easier to handle. They do their job and they do it well. The underperformers, however, tend to be trickier. How do you know when to invest company time, energy, and money in their improvement and when to cut your losses and let them go? Fortunately, there is an easy way to make this decision by asking yourself one simple question:

Is this a skill problem, or is it a will problem?

Skill Problems

Skill problems are markedly straightforward. There is some aspect of the employees performance that can be corrected by addressing a lack of knowledge or know-how. If your underperformer has the potential to do their job given the right amount of time or education, then they are certainly worth keeping. It’s when they don’t want to do their job that a critical issue arises.

Will Problems

Will problems are difficult. They occur when an employee lacks the drive or ambition to perform in their role. They may have all of the right skills and qualities that a rockstar performer does but if they aren’t willing to put in the work, or don’t see the value in doing so, then they will never add value to your team. If you determine that an employee is underperforming because of will problem, then it’s time to let them go.

The Termination Conversation

It’s important to approach a termination conversation in a strategic manner. It’s not enough to sit the employee down and say “You’re fired.” It’s not practical to engage them in a lengthy conversation that establishes you as a friend. Both options position you as a foe in the long run. If you find yourself in a situation that requires the termination of a team member, it’s best to conduct the conversation by acknowledging your failure.

Realistically, if you haven’t provided a team member with the drive, motivation, or inspiration to perform in their role then you have failed them. You’ve hired them incorrectly and you’ve managed them incorrectly. By accepting the blame at the start of the conversation, you’re automatically relieving some of the tension that automatically bubbles up when an employee is about to be fired. Do not dwell on their failures. It only draws out what should be a short, frank conversation. Merely inform the employee that you’ve failed at giving them what they need and, as a result, they have been unable to meet your company needs. Thus it’s time to part ways.

Addressing underperformance in this manner will eliminate some of the decision-making stress that so often comes with tough calls. Determine whether your employee can do the job, and whether they want to do the job…and then proceed accordingly.

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How NOT To Telemarket

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Sales is a broad field. There are numerous different job opportunities in several different aspects of sales, and none of them are so universally hated as telemarketing. The field of telemarketing tends to elicit a negative reaction from anyone who has ever spent countless minutes on a phone being “sold” by someone with a script and an earpiece. But it doesn’t have to be that way. In fact, that’s the wrong way to do telemarketing.

If your business uses telemarketing as a sales tactic, then it’s imperative that you understand the behavioral process causing your potential customers to shut down as soon as they realize who is on the other end of the line. Here’s what most telemarketers are doing wrong.

They Ask For Value Up Front

The last thing a consumer wants to hear when they answer the phone is an immediate request for something that they may or may not have. Most telemarketers begin their conversations by asking for time or answers. This immediately sends the consumer into a wary state. It also puts them in a position to decline. They know they’re being sold and they haven’t been given any incentive to offer their valuable time or conversation to your team.

They Sell Themselves

A lot of telemarketers do not understand the difference between selling a product, selling a personality, or offering value. If they’ve received any type of affirmation or consent from the potential client in step one, they immediately jump into their sales pitch. Tactics here will vary from team to team, but the concept is universal. The salesperson feels like he or she is on borrowed time, so they attempt to cram as much information into a brief period as possible. Facts like product details and deadlines take precedence over value. Don’t get me wrong, occasionally one of those facts or figures will solve a problem the potential client has been facing. But the odds of that happening are significantly less if the seller hasn’t taken the time to understand the needs of the consumer. 

They Ask To Give The Value in Exchange For Money

The third and final step in most telemarketing calls is the request for funds. The marketer delivers their scripted lines and proceeds straight to the second commitment request of the conversation— money. The potential client, having already given their time or answers, is now being asked to give yet again before the telemarketer gives them any real value in return. You can understand how this might be a problematic process.

Fortunately for sales teams around the world, telemarketing does not have to follow this precarious path. It stands to reason that if there’s a wrong way to do it, then surely there must be a right way. I can teach you the correct way to leverage telemarketing as a valid way to recruit customers to your sales funnel. For more information visit AaronSansoni.com and click BootCamp.

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Sales Can Still Be Cool

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There is a certain perception of sales professionals among the general public that is, unfortunately, widely shared. It’s communicated a hundred different ways in a thousand different words, but what it boils down to is this: selling isn’t cool.

The natural response of many in this particular profession is to find out more. Why is selling uncool? What behaviors can I change to seem less sales-y? Some professionals will even resort to lying about their position. They adopt ambiguous titles and rely on wordy job descriptions to mask their actual role. I try to make it a point to question those professionals about their responsibilities and the reason they are in the position they are in. Why? Because sales CAN be cool…as long as you understand the concept behind what you do.

Every single working human being is helping someone out with something else. It could be money. It could be time. It could be security. It could be anything, really. The important point is that everyone that goes to work on a daily basis is helping someone else in some way, shape, or form. For sales professionals, it is especially crucial that they understand who they are helping and what they are helping them with. A firm comprehension of this information has the potential to change the way you feel about what you do for a living.

Let’s say, for example, that you go to work every day to sell shoes door-to-door. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with this job. It is a perfectly respectable position, but the public perception of sales professionals has shamed us into thinking that it isn’t. So, when someone asks what you do for a living, your natural instinct is to say something like “I’m a marketing executive” or “I’m an account manager.”

While not altogether inaccurate, these responses almost always prompt the listener to ask for more information, and you’ll be forced to share the truth anyway. But what happens when you change your response to reflect who you help and how you help them? Then the conversation might look more like this:

Person 1: What do you do for a living?

Shoe Salesman: I provide extremely busy and/or disabled individuals with the opportunity to purchase footwear necessary for them to be successful in their daily lives without ever having to leave their home.

Do you think the individual asking the question is going walk away with a negative impression about what you do? Unlikely. The response above doesn’t seem shady, or greasy, or slick, or dishonest. It sounds cool. The job description didn’t change. The title didn’t change. Your own perception of what it is that you do changed, and that makes all the difference.

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What You Think You Do vs. What You Actually Do

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Today, the nature of a business can change in an alarmingly quick instant. Innovation, technology, and connectivity have the potential to turn any industry on its head in a heartbeat. That is why it’s absolutely critical that modern business owners truly understand the purpose of their company. They must determine the difference between what it is they think they do, and what it is they actually do.

Many of you are probably asking yourself what the difference is. That’s normal. We have a tendency to think only in terms of what we accomplish short-term and the direct impact it has on our own business. A company that produces energy drinks, for example, might say that what they do is manufacture and sell highly-caffeinated beverages for profit. While this isn’t inaccurate, it also isn’t enough to prevent the company from failing as they fall victim to an unexpected 21st-century invention.

Instead, the company should think in terms of their greater purpose:

  • Who purchases the energy drinks?
  • What do they hope to accomplish by purchasing them?
  • How can the company help their clients accomplish this in the best possible way?

By focusing on the larger goal behind the current product, business owners are better able to invest in the things that will help the company maintain relevance in the future.

Returning to our example above, let’s say that college students purchase the energy drinks in order to study more material, and new parents purchase the drinks to stay awake long enough to check off everything on their to-do lists. It would be safe to say that what the company actually does is help people find additional time to handle life’s challenges. With this knowledge, the company owner can invest in new research or technology that also aids in “finding additional time” for life.

It’s important to remember that merely identifying what you actually do is not enough to prevent your brand from becoming obsolete over time. You need to ensure that you’re communicating your greater purpose to consumers and investors alike. Marketing campaigns should evoke the emotions felt by your target audience when you’ve accomplished your greater purpose, regardless of what method was used to accomplish it. This will effectively allow your company to explore new product avenues while maintaining the public perception of your brand and increasing opportunities for growth over time.

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Changing The Way You Think About Fear

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Fear is universal. Every single person on this planet feels it in some way or another, and it’s not uncommon for fear to be the reason we choose not to succeed. Yes, you read that correctly. We choose not to succeed when we are afraid. We let something as fundamental as fear hold us back from achieving our goals and realizing our dreams. But it doesn’t have to be that way. What if we changed the way we think about fear?

For most of us, fear is an enigma. So much so that some of us don’t even know what our actual fears are…we just know that they terrify us. It is imperative that we make a conscious decision to break through those fears regardless of their nature. We need to break through our fears of failure, success, change, standing out, or being noticed. We have to make the conscious decision to move past them and some of us need to do it more than once.

Fear doesn’t go away. It’s human nature to feel it. So, while we might be able to suppress it, it’s nearly impossible to eliminate altogether. It returns when we least expect it and it’s our job as aspiring entrepreneurs to relearn the fears that cripple us and break through them time and time again. The best way to do that is to start failing.

There are so many would-be business owners out there that are so afraid of failing that they refuse to start trying in the first place. They constantly sit and wait for the perfect, risk-free opportunity to present itself. I’ll tell you what. That’s never going to happen. The only way you are going to break through your fears and succeed at running a business is to fail first. Once you’ve spent some time not succeeding, you’ll know exactly what it takes to reverse the trend. You need to start screwing up!

Being fearless means jumping in when you don’t necessarily know the outcome. Being fearless means getting it wrong a few times so that you know how to get it right. Learn to let your fears motivate you. Understand them and regear them if necessary, then use them to your advantage. Stop letting your fears control your decision-making process. Set out on your mission to start failing. Because it’s only when you control your fears and learn how to fail a few times that you’ll learn how to succeed.

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How Gratitude Can Change Your Business Mindset

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Let’s take a few minutes to talk about gratitude. We’re all familiar with the concept. Some of us practice it regularly. The question, however, is whether or not we practice it correctly.

If I asked you to create a gratitude list right now, what would be on it? I’d guess your family. Friends. Shelter. Job. But when you’re an entrepreneur you need to take it one step further than that. How many of you are thankful you woke up this morning? How many of you are grateful that you are capable of reading this article? What about the fact that you have an amazing opportunity to change your own situation?

One of the biggest things I am grateful for as an entrepreneur is the chance to pursue opportunities on my own terms. Even if I fail, I will forever be thankful that I failed my way. I didn’t have to lose on someone else’s terms. I’d take that opportunity over the alternative each and every day, so I try to remember that gratitude as I continue to pursue success, because, when you get right down to it, gratitude is all about perspective. As entrepreneurs, it is important to think about gratitude not only in terms of what we have and what we’ve achieved, but also in terms of what we could do.

There’s a common misconception among the general public that to be successful is to be a bad person. Somewhere along the way, making a lot of money became synonymous with being evil. I’m here to tell you that this is an extremely inaccurate generalization. You can make money and be a good person. Take a second to think about those things you are grateful for. Take a few more seconds to think about how you might be able to provide those things to someone else.

Let me demonstrate my point with a personal story. Through my nonprofit group, The Aaron Sansoni Foundation, we were able to donate 50,000 meals to hungry citizens of Australia. 50,000 is no small number. That’s a lot of food and a lot of food requires a lot of money. I am grateful that I chose to pursue and achieve goals that allow me to contribute to such a worthwhile cause. And make no mistake — it was my choice and I made it on my terms, and for that I am thankful.

Looking at your gratitude list has the potential to make you feel a bit more alive. It can change the way you think about your problems or the way you choose to approach life as it comes at you. If you begin each day thinking about all of the things you are grateful for, and all of the things you have the opportunity to be grateful for in the future, would that not impact your decision-making process?